Time magazine recently featured a cover story called "The Case for Teaching the Bible," giving a new slant to the controversial topic. One audience member says she doesn't think the Bible should be taught in public school. "If we're a multicultural nation, we should be taught all religious texts and philosophical texts in a proper context," she says. Mark, a school board president, says he opposes teaching the Bible because of the separation of church and state. "The First Amendment's very clear—you don't mix government and religion," he says.
Professor Stephen Prothero, who was featured in the Time magazine article, is the chairman of religious studies at Boston University and the author of the book Religious Literacy: What Every American Should Know and Doesn't. Despite the arguments against it, he says the Bible should be taught in schools. Stephen says many people don't know enough about the Bible, and it plays a major part in our culture and politics.
Stephen says the challenge is to teach the Bible in schools without preaching it to students. "It's not about trying to turn people into Christians or getting them to believe in Jesus. It's about trying to get them to understand what's going on in the world and understand what's going on in American politics," he says. In addition to learning about the Bible, Stephen agrees that a course on world religions should be added to the curriculum so students could learn about other belief systems.